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karl is in washington and has more on all this. good morning, jon. >> reporter: good morning, robin. there is no presidential candidate with more momentum right now than michele bachmann. ♪ my home in -- >> reporter: no republican presidential candidate has taken a harder line on the debt ceiling showdown than michele bachmann. >> we were all shocked and appalled that president obama dangled out in front of the cameras that senior citizens may not get their checks. that's a very dangerous statement to make. we don't believe -- excuse me. excuse me. we don't believe that for a moment. >> reporter: tough talk from bachmann is nothing new but she now speaks with new-found authority as a top tier contender for the republican presidential nomination. a new national poll puts bachmann firmly in second place as the leading challenger to front-runner mitt romney. and in key first caucus state iowa, three separate polls over the past week put bachmann in first place. >> republican primary voters are looking for somebody who has -- brings some excitement, who brings something different to t
that to happen. >> with that let me bring in our team. jake tapper, jon karl on capitol hill. jon, given the deadlock, the senate republican leader mitch mcconnell says he doesn't think a deal can be reached so calm up with a last-ditch fallback. >> reporter: last choice option, only if the talks completely collapse. it's complicated but the bottom line is, it would give the president the authority on his own to gradually raise that debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion between now and the election. the political burden is all the president's. he can do it without spending cuts and even in the face of opposition from the majority in congress. i talked to a lot of republicans in the house, rank and file, who say it's not acceptable. they want real spending cut, a lot of them and nothing else. >> there's no guarantee of spending cuts even though it would avoid tax increases. any openness in the white house to that and where do they think the talks are right now? are they as pessimistic as mr. mcconnell? >> reporter: well, mcconnell's deal sent two signals to the white house, one, good news to them
answers from our two guests today. budget director, jack lew and jon kyl. two people around the negotiating table. in the meantime, also the report about wanting to go back to the grabbed bargain. speaker boehner said he wants to do that. the president said he wants to do that. the question is whether they can get elements on boararto pass such a thing. that, also is something that is being required right now by the ratings agency. moodys. standards & poors. said they must have some credible deficit reduction plan, 4 trillion or so over the next 10 years because of the way they are looking at the u.s. dollar and threatening to downgrade u.s. credit worthiness, and add to the catastrophic woes a default can bring. >> if we do not have a plan by this friday we will not meet the august 2nd deadline. all right. cristiane, a lot of tension there in washington. be sure to join christiane where she sits down with office of management and budget, jacob lew and senate minority whip, jon kyl on "this week." >> now, filling in for ron claiborne once again is abc's andrea canning. >> go
and jon huntsman met face to face. what did they say? >> it was a nice exchange, a nice greeting. wishing each other luck and being friends. that's the way that all the candidates on the republican side should be. >> reporter: halfway across the country in clear lake, iowa, two other candidates enjoyed the same parade though hardly the same crowds. >> hi there. happy fourth of july. >> reporter: the surging michele bachmann was surrounded by a sparkly throng of supporters and a new campaign bus. the fourth is a glorious day for all americans including candidates. for them, it may be a chance to take a break from their recent big obsession, cash. mitt romney expects to come in somewhere south of 20 million. tim pawlenty, jon huntman and ron paul all way south of that. around 4 million apiece. meanwhile, president obama could raise as much as 60 million, though he spent the day with men and women whose value is beyond priceless. >> i cannot think of anybody i would rather celebrate with than all of you, the men and women of our military and our extraordinary military families. >> reporter:
. abc's jon karl joins us from washington. all talks secret up until now. what more do we know about what president obama and the speaker of the house have been discussing. >> reporter: a big deal here, george. as you mentioned, this would mean that the president would go along with reductions in spending to social security and medicare, most likely cost of living increases going down and in exchange republicans would accept some increase in tax revenues as part of an overhaul of the tax code. as one top administration told me, we need to do something unthinkable on entitlements. they need to do something unthinkable on tacks. >> unthinkable may be the word. these talks have been going on between the president and speaker boehner but there hasn't been a lot of discussion among a wider conferences in the house and the senate democrats and republicans and i guess the big question coming out of today's meeting, when other leaders find out about it, is it something they can work with and is it something that will fly? >> reporter: a great question. boehner and the president may be able t
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